Photo:Imaxtree/Jil Sander; Courtesy of Tory Burch; Imaxtree/Sportmax; Imaxtree/Area; Imaxtree/Ferragamo; Courtesy of Chanel
Maybe it's just me, but I've officially reached my limits with winter. Don't get me wrong. I love all my cozy winter staples, and I've been living for all the trends coming from the fall/winter 2023 collections. But the fatigue is palpable, and I know I'm not the only one experiencing it. This time of year marks when we all collectively begin to count the days until the official start of spring. For many, it's a time of renewal and a chance to reset everything, including how you dress.
While shedding a few layers is always exciting, there can be some trepidation about the shift into a new season. One can feel the added pressure to splurge on new clothing or to don recent trends when emerging back outside. But in this economy, dropping an entire check on new clothing isn't exactly reasonable. So what's an alternative to making your wardrobe feel fresh without spending a fortune on new clothing? The solution is jewelry.
Accessories have always been the easiest way to freshen up any staples in your closet. There's no shortage of accessories you can add to the mix to make your wardrobe feel current (e.g., hats and bags), but my favorite is jewelry. Without fail, adding a trend-forward ornament can make even the most basic staples shine. So to make the transition into the new season easy (and affordable), I've identified the seven biggest jewelry trends on the spring/summer 2023 runways and shopped them out. These trends are sure to make any wardrobe feel shiny and new.
Photo:Imaxtree/KNWLS; Imaxtree/Jil Sander; Courtesy of Acne Studios; Imaxtree/Rokh; Imaxtree/Michael Kors; Imaxtree/Jil Sander
As of late, Who What Wear editors can't stop talking about the resurgence of one specific trend: silver jewelry. For so long, it seemed that this metal had fallen to the wayside with the fashion set in favor of gold, but it got a repolish on the spring/summer 2023 runways. We saw designers embrace this metallic hue not only in their ready-to-wear pieces but also in every type of jewelry. It wasn't just that silver became the predominant metal of choice. Designers reenvisioned this alloy into very contemporary pieces.
We saw earrings that looked like mini sculptures in silver at Knwls, Bottega Veneta, and Rokh. At the same time, cuffs swirled up the arm and had intricate details at ACNE Studios, Kim Shui, and Tory Burch. And then, there are necklaces in every variety—from chunky chains at Jil Sander to super-long silver pendants at Michael Kors—all cast in silver. The result was a series of pieces that brought the shine back to this formerly "dated" metal.
Photo:Imaxtree/Jason Wu; Courtesy of Saint Laurent; Imaxtree/Trussardi; Imaxtree/Missoni; Courtesy of Tory Burch
There was a time when dainty jewelry was considered an art form, but that time is long gone. The past few seasons have given way to a shift that's culminated in the rise of sculptural earrings. Across spring/summer 2023 runways, we saw designers embrace oversize earrings with details that felt like they were pulled out of a modern art museum.
Each iteration of this trend seemed to take cues from the abstract-art movement. For example, at Jason Wu, oversize hoop earrings in silver and white were given a rippled effect. At Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, and Missoni, we saw oblong-shaped silver earrings in every size. There were even more literal takes on sculptural elements through the 3D spiral and wavy earrings seen in Tory Burch's, Trussardi's, and Masha Popova's S/S 2023 collections. It was, in a way, the best embodiment of what jewelry is supposed to be—wearable art.
Photo:Courtesy of Bally; Courtesy of Kim Shui; Imaxtree/Simkhai; Courtesy of Saint Laurent; Imaxtree/Ferragamo
Some of you reading this story may recall a time in the '00s and even in the '80s when you couldn't escape the clinking sound of bangles. Back then, the glitterati would not be caught on the red carpet without an almost egregious number of bracelets stacked to the brim. It was one of those trends that defined the times until it didn't. But like clockwork, this jewelry trend has reemerged on the runways. It should be noted, though, that there are a few differentiating factors to this trend that make it feel more modern compared to the past.
Photo:Courtesy of Tory Burch
First off, we saw designers opt for more modern styling of bangles along with craftsmanship techniques and shapes. For example, Bally created bangles using rippled gold casting and colorful gemstones. Meanwhile, Saint Laurent stacked bangles with geometric shapes on top of each other over coat sleeves and sheer gowns. At the same time, Ferragamo's cuff and bangle shapes had a more futuristic feel, especially when styled together.
But it wasn't just bangles that got a reboot; arm cuffs did too. At Tory Burch and Kim Shui, silver sculptural arm cuffs spiraled up the models' arms. Simkhai sent a breezy all-white look down the runway with a single gold rippled cuff. Collectively, it seemed designers wanted to make one utter "oh my" out of sheer astonishment that a once "dated" jewelry style could look so cool.
Photo:Imaxtree/Sportmax; Imaxtree/Masha Popova; Imaxtree/Bronx and Banco; Imaxtree/Alessandra Rich; Imaxtree/Fendi; Imaxtree/Jil Sander
The theme of this year's runways was all about layering, including rings. Much like other trends that play on layering, this trend was all about leaning into that "excessive" ethos. You saw that approach embodied in how hands had at least two to three rings minimum. And often, the rings had contrasting metals, styles, and silhouettes to lean into the maximalist aesthetic.
For instance, Bronx and Banco styled a gold oval ring with a silver knuckle one. Jil Sander styled a wraparound ring with a resin one. And even rings with different-colored gemstones were styled together at Masha Popova. If designers weren't mixing and matching metals and gems, they often had looks that featured multiple similar rings styled all together (see Fendi, Sportmax, Givenchy, and Alessandra Rich). No matter what type of piece it was, the call many designers made this season was to embrace rings to the max. The lesson from spring/summer 2023 collections can be boiled down to this: if you have a few pieces you like, why limit yourself? Put some rings on it—you won't regret it.
Photo:Imaxtree/Dries Van Noten; Courtesy of Tory Burch; Imaxtree/Ujoh; maxtree/Masha Popova; Courtesy of Roberto Cavalli
Ah, brooches—remember those? It's safe to say that most younger generations see pins as an antiquated accessory. And in some ways, that's not an incorrect assumption considering that the brooch came into style in the Victorian era and fell out of fashion in the '70s. But despite being around for a century, this accessory has managed to capture the attention and imagination of designers again. We first saw brooches reappear this last fall on the runways, and they remained relevant throughout spring/summer 2023 collections.
Designers took their brooches even further by embracing more contemporary shapes. There were, of course, the classic nature-inspired brooches (e.g., Roberto Cavalli's palm tree brooch), but mostly, we saw abstract pieces. For instance, a safety pin was embellished with rhinestones in Masha Popova's collection. At Dries Van Noten, sculptural brooches featured hammered metal circles and handblown glass. At Ujoh, there were oversize floral brooches made from silver and gold metal. And at Tory Burch, we saw sheer knits, jersey polos, and silk adorned with sculptural 3D pins. Overall, each iteration of brooches this season showed that this accessory is back and bolder than ever before.
Photo:Imaxtree/Isabel Marant; Imaxtree/Aniye Records; Imaxtree/Enfants Riches Déprimés; Imaxtree/Paco Rabanne; Courtesy of Acne Studios; Imaxtree/Coperni
It's no secret that the alt-girl aesthetic has been a significant source of inspiration for designers as of late. There's been no shortage of examples, from ready-to-wear pieces that draw inspiration from the grunge era to shoes that nod to the pop-punk movement. But for the point of this article, I'll focus on the most relevant one of all: angsty choker necklaces. Chokers were a prevalent part of fall collections, but we saw them get an even edgier spin for the spring. Of course, there were iterations of the classic black choker, but even still, it had elements that made it feel different.
For example, Isabel Marant elevated the rubber choker with various layers and tiny beads. At the same time, a thick leather choker with a belt buckle went down the runway at Paco Rabanne. But the collars didn't just come in black. We saw necklaces with even grungier elements, including crosses (see Blumarine and Aniye Records) and even spikes (seen at ACNE Studios). But the most modern take was the surrealist elements added to this accessory—at Enfants Riches Déprimés, a black velvet choker was adorned with a spoon. At Coperni, a silver collar was crafted to look like an iPhone cord, and headphones were wrapped around the neck. The spring/summer 2023 collections, in many ways, were a nod to the evolution of this once-adolescent accessory into adulthood. And while the choker has grown up, it's still as angsty as ever.
Photo:Imaxtree/Vivetta; Imaxtree/Alessandra Rich; Imaxtree/Zimmermann; Imaxtree/Ludovic de Saint Sernin; Imaxtree/Susan Fang; Courtesy of Acne Studios
And finally, the trend worth noting is the widespread bloom of floral jewelry. It should come as no surprise that florals played an influential role on runways (it is spring, after all), but still, it was a trend I didn't expect to grow as big as it has. First, 3D flowers emerged in the fall/winter 2022 collections as appliqué rosettes on clothing, but since then, we've seen a takeover of all things botanical.
Spring collections leaned into the floral theme, especially in the jewelry department. No piece of jewelry was safe from becoming a garden. There was everything from ear cuffs covered in flowers at Zimmerman to full flower-shaped earrings (see Susan Fang and Jason Wu). In addition to floral earrings, we saw chokers with flowers at Vivetta and ACNE Studios. And even crystal chokers and bracelets were adorned with 3D rosettes at Alessandra Rich. But the final seedling of proof showing flowers were burgeoning was the life-like anthuriums spotted on bracelets, necklaces, charms, and ready-to-wear pieces at Ludovic de Saint Sernin and Loewe. Florals for spring may be cliché, but this jewelry trend proved they can still be pretty.